Faith Seeking Understanding - 2022 Lecture Series

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2022 Programme will be delivered via Zoom.

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This introductory course in Theology is intended to meet the need, expressed by some, to be more literate about their faith. Very often our understanding is more intuitive than explicit and our ability to deal in an informed and enlightened way with many of the complex religious and moral issues that arise can be quite limited. We sometimes wish we had more to draw on so as to be better able to explain how we see things. This series is an attempt to respond to this need and to introduce people who are interested to the wealth of theological insight that is available in the Catholic tradition.

The theme for this year’s series:

The Work of Christian Love

A life lived in faith has many gifts to bestow on those who follow that path, and yet in the contemporary world identifying as a person of faith can bring with it personal and communal challenges. This year’s series seeks to open up a space in which we can explore and celebrate the many gifts that our Catholic faith bestows as well as being honest about the work required to continue to nurture that faith, both our own and that of others, including students in our schools.

Lecture 1: Wednesday 2nd February - 'We have seen your salvation': making sense of the Doctrine of the Incarnation

Dr. Michael Kirwan SJ: second speaker to be confirmed.

Today is the Feast of the Presentation, the "little Christmas" forty days after the birth of Christ. This session will use this feast to reflect upon the doctrine of the Incarnation, the Christian belief that God took human form. How are we to understand this teaching today, especially in a world of many religious pathways?

Lecture 2: Wednesday 9th February - The repercussions of grace: Christian saints

Prof. Fáinche Ryan and Dr. Michael Kirwan SJ, Loyola Institute, School of Religion, Theology and Peace Studies, Trinity College Dublin.

Five hundred years ago the life of St Ignatius of Loyola was turned around when he was seriously injured in battle. This year the Society of Jesus commemorates his ‘cannonball moment’. This session will explore the lives of saints, specifically Julian of Norwich, and the Jesuit martyrs Edmund Campion and Rutilio Grande. What do their graced experiences of conversion tell us about how God shapes the lives of people of faith?

Lecture 3: Wednesday 16th February: A God of Healing in a Wounded World

Prof. Karen Kilby and Prof. Paul Murray, Department of Theology and Religion, University of Durham.

For many Christians, the experience of innocent suffering in their lives and in the world around us challenges the conviction that God is at work. Two theologians who have reflected upon suffering and its relevance to the Christian life will help address these questions. This session will explore the ways scripture and Christian tradition show us the healing power of God in response to suffering.

Format: The three sessions will be streamed live on Zoom. As with last year, the lectures will be recorded and made available for the week following each lecture. The Zoom link will be emailed to you each week in advance of the lectures.

Timetable for each evening:

Session 1: 5.30 - 6.30 (Irish Time)

Interlude: 6.30 - 6.50

Session 2: 6.50 - 7.50

Conclusion: 7.50 - 8.00

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